Monday, July 16, 2007

The Tenor(s) of Our Times

Just checking in quickly during camp week, with a couple of quick notes:
  • Down Beat Magazine has a category in its readers' and critics' polls called "Talent Deserving Wider Recognition." Tonight, I want to talk about two people in our camp so far who definitely fall in the TDWR category. One is Chris Vadala, our special guest for tonight. He's known for his tenor work with Chuck Mangione from the "Feels So Good" days, but he's also a very fine alto player with touches of Phil Woods (one of his former teachers), a very exciting soprano player, and--though he didn't bust it out tonight--a standard-setting flautist, one that any saxophonist could use as a role model when picking up the flute. It was a thrill to share the stage with him, and it's a shame that he's not more well-known by the larger jazz audience. Check out his site and pick up his recording.

  • As a few friends and I were saying tonight, it boggles the mind that Ed Petersen isn't a household name in jazz (yet). His creativity and technique are dazzling, and he's just a constant wellspring of ideas. It's a privilege to sit next to him in faculty big band, and I have to tell you that I've missed more than my share of entrances on backgrounds during his solos because I'm just sitting there in amazement.
If you wanted to expand your list of jazz players worth checking out, just go to my MySpace and check out the list of players in the faculty big band, and then Google any name; there's not a person in there who's not worth listening to. This is definitely one of my favorite weeks of the year.

Long day; more later.

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